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  1. #1

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    If you had the money! Who would you have make you a Jazz guitar! Also explain why!
    Marc

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Probably Theo Scharpach...I love the aesthetics of his archtops.

    http://www.scharpach.com/

  4. #3

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    Ren Fergusen. He designed the new Guild Orpheum acoustic line based on the style and construction of guitars from the 1930's and absolutely nailed it!

  5. #4

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    Well, I would build it myself. The question is who would I approach to study under.

  6. #5

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    After seeing what Heritage did for Jim Soloway, I'd give them a call.
    If I had even more money probably Buscarino.
    Played Corey Christiansen's. Felt like home.

  7. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by kenbennett View Post
    Well, I would build it myself. The question is who would I approach to study under.
    I first thought the same thing, Ken...but sometimes, only sometimes, it's nice for someone else to do all the work and let me focus on playing the thing ...

  8. #7

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    I really dig what this guy has been up to:

    http://www.koentoppguitars.com/guitars.php
    Jay

    'boobadoobadoobaooababop!'

  9. #8

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    Taylor guitars stole him away, but

    http://www.andypowersinstruments.com...ning_room.html
    B+
    Frank (aka fep)

  10. #9

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    Well, no desire to be snide or braggadocious . . but, I had/have the money to have a guitar built by anyone I wanted to. I chose this builder and this guitar. I don't think I could have gotten a [better] guitar built by anyone on the planet.









    Patrick2 . . Heritage representative (now former)

  11. #10

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    Until I started building my own guitars, except for one old beat up Telecaster, I played Gibsons my whole life. Now, in a way, Heritage is more Gibson than Gibson. I can definitely feel the attraction. I would consider a Heritage.

    I built my first guitar in 1993. A few years later I retired the old 54 Les Paul Jr that my dad bought in the early 60s. Since then I've been happy with my guitars. The acoustic that I play now was built by my father and restored by me.

    I have worked with some great guitar makers and played many great guitars. So I have personal feelings about some guitars and guitar people. One of my best friends in the business, Mark Piper, is making his own line of guitars now, including archtops. He and Evan Ellis built the Benedettos at Guild under Bob's supervision. Evan moved to Savannah and assumed the role of foreman at the new Benedetto shop. They tried to recruit Mark, but he didn't want to move, so he recommended me. My wife and I went down there in March of 2007, met Bob and Cindy, Evan, and Paul Howard. They offered me the job, but it didn't work out for us to relocate either. So I came home and designed my own.

    About 3 years ago a guitarist in Atlanta, Jim Sadler, came to me for an archtop. He knew I had never built one, but he wanted to work with someone and be there for every step of the process. I had already built 3 guitars for him where he and his wife helped with the inlays and he did some of the work himself in my shop. So we decided to build 2 archtops, one for him and one for me. We worked one day each week. Finally, his is at the finisher's right now. It will be back for final assembly in a few weeks. By the time it comes back, mine will be ready for finishing. So the whole question of who would make my jazz guitar may already be answered. Until we build more, that's the one I'm going to play.

    To seroiusly answer the OP's original question, if I were to hire someone to make a guitar for me, it would probably be Mark Piper. The other question is why? Mark has finished some of the guitars that I've made, and I managed to keep one for myself. It's a copy of my old 54 LPJ, with my headstock, finished in SG red, that I built with my son Damon and our other guitarmaking partner Danny Clinton. Besides the fact the I love him, Mark is an excellent craftsman. It would be an honor to have one of his guitars in the family collection.

  12. #11
    Just window shopping....Anyone know the price range for the Scharpach or others mentioned above!
    Marc

  13. #12

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    I wouldn't need to spend ridiculous money...I have a plan to actually do this...Steve Holst, Victor Baker and yes, Heritage, are on my short list. I need a little more time to figure out what I'm actually looking for. I'm thinking more and more to drive after a specific sound as opposed to trying to spec "the ultimate guitar for freaking everything."
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
    http://www.youtube.com/user/jeffreymatz

    "Jazz is like life...it goes on longer than you think, and as soon as you're like 'oh, I get it,' it ends."

    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  14. #13

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    Jeff,

    Just my taste... If you get a Baker, avoid all that dark stain on the bare wood trying to pop grain that's already naturally popping like mad. That technique should be used sparingly even on lightly figured woods that could benefit from it. Don't think I could live with that headstock shape either. Heritage is barely better in that regard. And original tailpieces are especially challenging. But that's just me. And I think special care is needed when using straight lines in a design that is traditionally almost all curves.

    The Holst designs are more elegant to my eye. The finish work seems more natural looking. I love his f-holes, though only one guitar on his site has them. One of his tailpieces, the one with the S-curve on top looks nice.

    Looks is only one thing. When you sit down to play, the sound is really what people are paying attention to.

    Both Holst and Baker seem reasonably priced.

    Good luck,
    KB

  15. #14

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    Linda Manzer.
    ... but, I know it ain't gonna happen.

  16. #15

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    Montelleone of course. The question was, "if you had the money". Is there a better investment?
    Last edited by fumblefingers; 03-05-2014 at 11:05 PM.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by fumblefingers View Post
    Montelleone of course. The question was, "if you had the money". Is there a better investment?
    Now THAT IS the question, and would not be THE question if everyone agreed with you

  18. #17

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    Buscarino or Benedetto. Beautiful sounding instruments.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by snoskier63 View Post
    Now THAT IS the question, and would not be THE question if everyone agreed with you

    fine. what would be better investment wise?


    as an example of what I'm talking about, have you seen some of D'Aquisto's guitars going for $100K? They were originally less than $15K.


    another good idea would be a Benedetto, one that Bob made pre-Fender contract. Their prices seem to be holding pretty well. A Gibson Citation on the other hand, isn't made by a named luthier. Their prices are stable if the seller can wait, but aren't likely to appreciate like the aforementioned luthier's instruments.

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Buscarino or Benedetto. Beautiful sounding instruments.

    I have one of each, and agree whole-heartedly.

  21. #20

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    I little out of the box thinking from me. I'd like Uli Teuffel to make me an archtop Bird-Fish.

    Build bridges, not walls.

  22. #21

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    As I am sucker for when it comes to Gibson classic tone and prestige from the golden age, I would ask Gibson Custom Shop for a single pup TF.
    Or even better, a personalized single pup ES350 (25.5 scale) with my personalized ornementation:
    Multiple binding, bowtie-shaped inlayed fretboard, L5 type pickguard, all hardware would be nickel, trapeze tailpiece and figured maple finished in faded viceroy brown or aged natural.

  23. #22

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    If I could justify it, what I would buy is a Frameworks guitar for the convenience factor and for travelling.

  24. #23

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    If I had the money, there would be more than one.
    Still working on it.

  25. #24

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    Heritage.

  26. #25

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    Fumblefingers - I have to agree. As an aside, here is something real curious. I met Bob Benedetto, who is five years older than I, back around 1973 or so, when I was living in PA. My first electric guitar was a Gretsch Anniversary model that my parents generously gave me when I was about thirteen. Unfortunately, the guitar had suffered a separation of the neck from the body in a fall from a guitar stand. Some great musician friends of mine suggested this guy in East Stroudsburg, PA, so we went to his small repair shop. Bob was very direct, but nice. His repair actually lasted until around 1990, when the guitar took another tumble and the set neck repair failed. Bob had warned me this could happen.

    The curious thing is that on his web site under "history" he recounts that he moved to East Stroudsburg in the late Eighties if I recall. But the photos of him as a young man match my distinct recollection of him, though the official history dates don't reconcile.

    Anyone else remember him working in PA in the Seventies (I'm nearly positive it was E. Stroudsburg) ?

    Jay

  27. #26

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    Roger Borys laminate.

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by fumblefingers View Post
    fine. what would be better investment wise?

    as an example of what I'm talking about, have you seen some of D'Aquisto's guitars going for $100K? They were originally less than $15K.
    My reply to your choice of Montelleone was not intended to be taken so seriously as they are certainly very nice guitars, but since it was taken seriously let me follow up on my thoughts.

    Guitars as a great investment surely sounds nice, but the only guitars that can truly be lumped into investment class, of course in my opinion, are those that are extremely rare, or those that were played by someone of relevance. Take a 1958 L5CES, for example. The originally sold for $615 in 1958. If you took that same $615 and invested it in the stock market and received on average 8% per year you would have $45,000 today.

    Investments, in general, are risky. Buying something as a collectable is fine, and one day that something might actually be worth decent money. However, it is more likely that it won't be worth what one had hoped. While some D'Aquisto's are examples of great investments just look at all the great vintage guitars that sell for less than the cost the same model new, including many vintage L5''s, which are excellent guitars.

    Ultimately, despite what some think, there is no way to predict which guitars will be worth a fortune and which will just be awesome guitars that can give one a lifetime of enjoyment. Buy the guitars you love and can afford, but in terms of investments, I will choose to put my hard-earned money where the odds are more in my favor.

    Sorry for getting too serious on everyone, especially on a Friday evening. Let me get back to playing my Guild AP X-500 that may not appreciate like a D'Aquisto, but it's a killer guitar, and I plan on enjoying it for another 30+ years if I am so fortunate.

  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by snoskier63 View Post
    My reply to your choice of Montelleone was not intended to be taken so seriously as they are certainly very nice guitars, but since it was taken seriously let me follow up on my thoughts.

    Guitars as a great investment surely sounds nice, but the only guitars that can truly be lumped into investment class, of course in my opinion, are those that are extremely rare, or those that were played by someone of relevance. Take a 1958 L5CES, for example. The originally sold for $615 in 1958. If you took that same $615 and invested it in the stock market and received on average 8% per year you would have $45,000 today.

    Investments, in general, are risky. Buying something as a collectable is fine, and one day that something might actually be worth decent money. However, it is more likely that it won't be worth what one had hoped. While some D'Aquisto's are examples of great investments just look at all the great vintage guitars that sell for less than the cost the same model new, including many vintage L5''s, which are excellent guitars.

    Ultimately, despite what some think, there is no way to predict which guitars will be worth a fortune and which will just be awesome guitars that can give one a lifetime of enjoyment. Buy the guitars you love and can afford, but in terms of investments, I will choose to put my hard-earned money where the odds are more in my favor.

    Sorry for getting too serious on everyone, especially on a Friday evening. Let me get back to playing my Guild AP X-500 that may not appreciate like a D'Aquisto, but it's a killer guitar, and I plan on enjoying it for another 30+ years if I am so fortunate.
    Your comments above are skewed intentionally to prove an ill conceived point. Unfair! If you took that same $615 in 1958 and invested it in the wrong stock . . you'd be broke in 6 months. If one could determing consistently which stock could guarantee an 8% ROI over 50+ years they'd out pace Warren Buffet. Here's an example you might have missed. There were some 1700 1959 Les Paul Standards made . . not a rare guitar at the time. They originally sold for $256 . . a little more than 1/3 of your $615 example above. Today in as pristine of condition as a stock certificate might be.. a 1959 burst would be worth 6 times or more than the $45,000 in your example above. Which would you think might be the better ROI?

    Also, what about the joy of ownership? Can you play music on a stock certificate? I can make the same case for a newly purchased D'Angelico back in the '50s . . originally costing a few hundred dollars . . or a newly purchased D'Aquisto back in the '70s for a few thousand dollars. Either would sell at or above the $45,000 mark you referenced. I any of the cases I've referenced, there would have been a half century of joy of ownership and wonderful music from those guitars. What would you estimate those intangibles to be valued at?

    People have lost fortunes in the stock market. I can't imagine anyone has ever lost a dime on a Montelleone arch top . . . or a D'Angelico or a D'Aquisto . . . . .
    Patrick2 . . Heritage representative (now former)

  30. #29

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    My intent was to prove a point, not to be fair, so thank you.

    Anyone that invests all of their money on one stock deserves to be broke. Investing is not an all or nothing proposition, and those that are wise spread their money out very diversely, then are in a better position in terms of minimizing risk. If one simply invested in the index you are betting that the market will rise over time, which has actually occurred, and for a return higher than 8%, but we are here to talk guitars, not the stock market.

    Regarding the Les Paul you mention, those certainly became valuable, but how many do you own? In the mid 60's they were being given away until Mike Bloomfield, I believe (correct me if I am wrong), started playing the older guitars. Suddenly, guitar values skyrocketed, often on mediocre vintage guitars, and here we are.

    As for the enjoyment factor, I believe I clearly mentioned that, and in fact rested my argument on it, but you clearly did not read my entire comment, which is fine.

    Now to get back to the original thread, and to lighten things up a bit, check out this nice list of esteemed luthiers. I would take a guitar from each of them.

    http://www.finearchtops.com/archtop-...-luthiers.html

  31. #30

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    To be broke in 6 months after investing in the wrong stock implies that the $615 was all the money you had. Man, it's hard to make a good argument without slipping up and exaggerating something.

    ROI on a guitar, to me, means you earn more money playing the guitar than you paid for it. Damn, it just occurred to me that guitars are capital equipment; we can take depreciation on the things! I need to stop doing my own taxes.

  32. #31

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    "...awesome guitars that can give one a lifetime of enjoyment. Buy the guitars you love and can afford..." Good thinking.

    I am a sucker for the Gibson Custom Shop archtops so one Super 400CES with a single neck pup and spruce and flamed maple of my choice. Naturally, finished in Natural.

    A Trenier Excel ticks all the right boxes too.

    For my tastes and pecuniary reality, my dream archtop does not cost a nightmarish sum of money thankfully so I can more than dream about it.

  33. #32

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    this is getting too serious. its just a little game.

    when someone says "what XYZ would you buy if money were no object?" or words to that effect, your supposed to play the game right.

    playing the game right means to think of the very best (which often times is also the most expensive).


    I think Montelleone's custom instruments fit that bill nicely, but even better, will likely appreciate sharply after he passes (hopefully many decades from now). i hate to say something like that, but that's how it works with great artists and everybody knows it. that's why i related the example of the D'Aquisto.

    In the Metropolitan Museum of Art there are exactly two beautiful archtops under glass. One is a John D'Angelico, the other is Steve Miller's (yes that Steve Miller) D'Aquisto. The D'Angelico was restored. Wanna guess who restored it? You guessed it - John Montelleone.

  34. #33

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    I have to pay people to listen to my playing. Does that mean my taxes go up?

  35. #34

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    I'd have Gibson build me a copy of the custom they made for Joe Pass that he used after 1991.